It’s grilling season, and who doesn't love a good summer BBQ? If you have dietary restrictions, diabetes or prediabetes, you might be wondering how you can enjoy the festivities without putting yourself at risk. Here are a few tips to help you make the most of your summer BBQ while still maintaining your dietary needs.
Fiber slows down the rate at which carbs hit your system, so vegetables are always your friend. Add a simple side salad, swap whole grains for refined grains, or even add your own fiber by sprinkling flaxseed and chia seed on your food choices.
Make room for fat
Fat doesn't readily turn into sugar like carbs do, so it could actually help stabilize blood sugar levels depending on what you're eating with it. Go ahead and add some healthy fats to your meal—think olive oil, nuts, or avocado.
Bring a dish to share
When you're the one in charge of bringing food, you can control what goes into it. Whip up some avocado deviled eggs or some kebabs that everyone will love, and you'll know that you'll be able to eat at least one thing that won't spike your blood sugar.
You can even bring crowd-pleasing desserts and dishes! Here are a few sugar-free favorites that everyone loves.
- SWEET & SAVORY KETO CHICKEN WINGS (SUGAR-FREE, TOO!)
- CHOCOLATE FROSTED ZUCCHINI BROWNIES
- SUGAR-FREE COPYCAT CHICK FIL-A SAUCE
- EASY AIR FRYER KETO CHURROS
Look out for sneaky sources of sugar and carbs
Many BBQ staples like ketchup, salad dressings, and sauces can be loaded with sugar. To eliminate these extra sources of sugar and carbs, you may want to bring a few single-serve containers of your favorite condiments so that you can add flavor without worry. Here two favorite dressings to try:
If you’re wondering where else sugar might be hiding, check out this article.
Limit sugary foods
Picnics and parties have no shortage of sweet treats. But, if you have diabetes or prediabetes, you might have trouble regulating after you've had something sugary.
You can have chocolate, cookies, and cupcakes that were made with natural, blood-sugar-friendly sugar alternatives.
And if you do decide to indulge, follow your doctor's advice and use your normal carb-counting and insulin protocols.
Experiment with natural sweetener
If you're really craving something sweet, go ahead and indulge with monk fruit— a natural, plant-based sweetener that won't send your blood sugar through the roof.
You can use Lakanto Classic 1:1 Sugar Substitute in place of sugar for most recipes. Try it out in your favorite recipes and see what you think!
Just because you have diabetes, prediabetes, or other dietary restrictions doesn't mean you can't enjoy a delicious summer BBQ with all the fixin’s. With a little planning and some simple swaps, you can make sure your next cookout is both tasty and dietary-friendly.
And as always, run things by your doctor if you’re not sure. They’re there to help you keep your blood sugar steady and live your best life!
What are your favorite tips for enjoying a BBQ while managing diabetes? Let us know on Instagram.